|The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from Men of Iron by Howard Pyle:
with courage steeled to meet the coming encounter. There was a
hard, grim look in his blue eyes that, for a moment perhaps,
quelled the elder lad. He hesitated. "Tom! Wat! Ned!" he called
to the other bachelors, "come hither, and lend me a hand with
"An ye come nigh me," panted Myles, "I will brain the first
Then Gascoyne dodged behind the others, and, without being seen,
slipped out of the room for help.
The battle that followed was quick, sharp, and short. As Blunt
strode forward, Myles struck, and struck with might and main, but
Men of Iron
|The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from The House of Dust by Conrad Aiken:
As evening falls,
The walls grow luminous and warm, the walls
Tremble and glow with the lives within them moving,
Moving like music, secret and rich and warm.
How shall we live to-night, where shall we turn?
To what new light or darkness yearn?
A thousand winding stairs lead down before us;
And one by one in myriads we descend
By lamplit flowered walls, long balustrades,
Through half-lit halls which reach no end. . . .